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Browsing: Papers of John Adams, Volume 9

Docno: ADMS-06-09-02-0064

Author: Livingston, Muscoe
Recipient: Adams, John
Date: 1780-03-28

From Muscoe Livingston

[salute] Dear Sir

Permit me, late as it is, to congratulate you on your Safe arrival one More to this Country, after the very disagreable passage you must have had, Owing to the distress of the frigate you was on board of.
You was so Good as take Charge of a Letter for Governor Livingston from me at Lorient last year; nay did you See him or did you send the Letter to him.1
I am happy to tell you, that I have all most Recovered My health; and as there is a fleet of French Men of war going out to America, I am Exceedingly Anxious to profit of such an Opportunity; can you and will you be so Good as to procure me a passage in one of them; Should they be destined for Virginia I can be of some Service to them, on that coast which I should be happy to do.
I wish Much, to have had the happiness to See you, before I left this country, as I have Many things to Say, that in those days of[]2 amongst us it would be imprudant to trust to paper.
Should I be So lucky as Git permition to go, in One of the Men of war for America; and you have any dispatches for the Continant, I beg leave to Offer you My best Services, on the delivery of them, as any thing Else, that I have the power of doing. Plan to direct to me, Au Soins de Mons. Schweighauser, I have the Honor to be with Much Respect Dear Sir, your most Obd H Ser,
[signed] M. Livingston3
{ 92 }
1. See Livingston's letter to JA of 17 June 1779 (vol. 8:95), and JA's reply to this letter of 10 April (below).
2. Thus in the manuscript.
3. For Livingston, former lieutenant on the frigate Boston and, with John Bondfield and William Haywood, shareholder in the privateer Governor Livingston, see vols. 6 and 8.

Docno: ADMS-06-09-02-0065

Author: Adams, John
Recipient: Lovell, James
Date: 1780-03-29

To James Lovell

[salute] My dear Friend

The States of the Province of Friesland, have come to a Resolution, that it was certain that Byland was not the Aggressor, but that Fielding, had not hesitated, to make Use of Force to visit the dutch Ships under Convoy, to stop those that were found loaded with Hemp, and to insult the Flagg of the Republic. That this Proceeding shows, that the Complaisance hitherto employed towards England, in depriving the ships loaded with Masts and ship timber, of the Protection of the State, in leaving them to sail alone and without Convoy, has had no Effect: and consequently the States judge that a similar Condescention, ought no longer to take Place: but on the Contrary, all Merchandizes whatsoever, which the Treaties do not expressly declare to be contraband, ought, without the least difficulty, to be admitted under Convoy, and enjoy the Protection of the state, and to this Effect, his most serene Highness ought to be requested to give orders to the Commanders of the Men of War and of the Squadrons of the Republic, to protect, as heretofore, all Merchandizes. This Resolution was taken 29 Feb. and laid before the states General, who, after deliberating upon it determined to require the deputies of the other Provinces, to obtain as soon as possible the Decisions of the other Provinces, upon the same subject. Thus two Provinces Holland and Friesland have decided for unlimited Convoys.
Sir Joseph Yorke, on the 21. of March laid before their High Mightinesses another Memoire insisting on the Aid, which he had demanded before, upon Condition, in Case of Refusal, that his Master would after 3 Months, consider all Treaties between the two Nations as null.1
In short it looks as if England would force the Dutch into the War, but if they take a Part it will be certainly for Us. Oh that Laurens was there. Oh that Laurens was there! <Oh that I was Home>
This will go by Mr. Izard, if the Alliance comes to Philadelphia, I { 93 } must beg you to take Care of a Trunk for my Wife, which Captn. Jones will deliver you.2
1. To this point, the text was inserted almost verbatim into JA's letter of 29 March to the president of Congress (No. 29, calendared, below). In his reference to Sir Joseph Yorke's memorial, JA made two errors that were repeated in his letter to the president. The grace period was to be three weeks, not three months, and, although the effect would be the same, the treaties were to be suspended rather than nullified or abrogated. See also, Alexander Gillon's letter of 14 March, note 2 (above).
2. See JA to James Moylan, 6 March, and notes 1 and 3 (above).
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2018.